Neil Gaiman’s Shoggoth’s Old Peculiar

Original release date July 12, 2012

“I quite like what you’ve written here.”  Those words come from Neil Gaiman’s mouth and he was referencing something I’d written.  The setting was a big fancy movie studio, the office of a senior exec – I was a junior exec at the time.  The senior exec and I had been working on an idea we had for a feature film back when it was still possible to create original content for the big screen.  I was tasked with fleshing out the core concept and mythology of the story to present to someone of real talent who would then adapt and expand on the idea eventually delivering a full-on script.  The person in question was Neil Gaiman. He may not remember the meeting or the words, but I certainly do because when Neil Fucking Gaiman says, “I quite like what you’ve written here,” well, that sticks with you.  And it wasn’t because of the accent, although that does add something.  The project never came to be, nor did the project we tried to attach him to after that. The business was changing.  Superheroes were coming.

Flash forward a few years later and the studio was in my rear view mirror.  Earbud was a few months away from launching and on a whim I reached out to Neil to see if he wanted to write something original for the site.  He didn’t, he was very busy. Not surprising, dominating the fantasy universe is like that. However he did offer up his list of short stories to adapt if I could find one that would work.  I did.

Shoggoth’s Old Peculiar fit the bill instantly because of the copious amounts of dialogue.  But the origin of the story made the notion of producing this even more delicious because two of the characters were based on a bit by Brit Comedians Dudley Moore and Peter Cook (You can hear their Derek and Clive bits on youtube).  This gave us even firmer ground to stand on paying homage to great source material as well as a couple of legendary comedians.  It helped realize the characters of Seth and Wilf.  We’re really proud of this one and we are very grateful to Neil for letting us tinker under the hood with his short story (and for giving us the occasional shoutout and audience boost).

Earbud has been from the beginning a great creative sandbox.  It’s hard work a lot of the time, but Shoggoth’s also proved that it can be very, very fun.


Young American Ben Lassiter is touring the British coastline when he’s forced to take refuge from the rain at a pub in the town of… Innsmouth. Here he meets the peculiar Seth and Wilf who have something to teach Ben about life, Lovecraft, death and unspeakable horror. Spot art by Alexa James.  Adapted by Casey Wolfe and performed by Jake Borelli, Simon Verlaque, Rees Pugh and Joanne McCallin, please sit back and enjoy a pint of Shoggoth’s Old Peculiar.

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